This year the Singaporean ACJC Alumni Choir explores Finnish choral tradition in the All Sing 2017 project. The ACJC Alumni Choir hosted choir workshop ”Arctic Meets Tropic” at ACJC Heritage Hall on Saturday 14th and Sunday 15th October. The workshop was led by renowned Finnish conductor Mari Koistinen, who has collaborated with ACJC Alumni Choir also in All Sing 2014. All Sing 2017 is jointly organised with SuomiFinland100 Singapore as part of Finland’s 100 years of independence celebrations.
The workshop brought together Singaporean and Finnish choristers with most having strong choral background. In addition to ACJC Alumni Choir members, talented singers from different Singaporean choirs and six Finnish singers joined to sing traditional Finnish choral music from Sibelius to folk music.
These amazing choristers didn’t need much help with the actual singing part, therefore the focus of the workshop was in the languages the performed music was written in: Finnish and Swedish.
Mari Koistinen’s experience in leading choral groups from diverse backgrounds shows, as she is a true expert on helping choristers sing in a foreign language. Koistinen guided singers through difficult Finnish pronunciation with a humorous touch and memorable examples of the way Finns truly speak.
Along with refining the choristers’ pronunciation and guiding through various music styles, the workshop paid attention to shedding light to the background of the musical pieces performed. To capture the spirit of famous Finnish musical pieces, it was essential the choristers knew the historical story behind the songs.
The project will culminate in the performances in the Gardens by the Bay Flower Dome in the celebrations of the centenary of Finland's independence on 6 and 9 December. Arctic meets Tropic workshop was sponsored by Ductor in collaboration and with dedicated support by ACJC Alumni Choir.
Photo Courtesy of Marica Salokangas.